CB 10 OKs overhaul of Ward Playground

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Community Board 10 approved a city Parks Department plan to renovate the Walter Ward Playground at PS 207 in Howard Beach during its monthly meeting last Thursday.

A representative of the school said PS 207 appreciated the board’s vote, noting that City Councilman Joseph Addabbo (D−Howard Beach) secured $1.7 million to fund the project.

“If you see our park ... quite frankly, it’s nothing to look at,” said Nina DiBlasio. She said parents had complained about the park’s condition.

Addabbo, elected to succeed state Sen. Serphin Maltese (R−Glendale) Nov. 4, told the board renovating the PS 207 playground was “something that had to be done.”

“We hope this renovated park will make it a safer park,” he said.

The board unanimously approved the renovation in a voice vote.

Addabbo also warned that city budget cuts will be discussed when the Council meets Thursday.

He said similar cuts will have to be made in the state budget.

“Not only is the city doing bad [financially], but so is the state,” he told the board. “Obviously, we’re going to have tough choices to make.”

When he heads to Albany in January, Addabbo said he would try to “protect the rising cost of living” and senior centers, which he said should not be budget casualties.

“In order for us to keep the cost of living down, we’re going to have to make drastic cuts.”

At this week’s Council meeting, the senator−elect said, “we’ll have to get out the knife and start cutting.”

Addabbo said he would visit the board frequently to give updates on the goings−on in the Senate after he is sworn in.

“For too often, what happens in the state Senate, nobody knows about,” he said.

He thanked his supporters and even those who voted for Maltese, pledging to represent those who cast ballots for the outgoing senator.

“We put aside our differences that we might have had during the campaign,” he said.

Addabbo said he would keep his Howard Beach office and the same phone number once he officially becomes a senator.

“The sign on the outside will change, but for the most part I’m not going anywhere,” he said.

Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e−mail at or by phone at 718−229−0300, Ext. 173.

Posted 6:38 pm, October 10, 2011
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